Here are my top picks (with a focus on Halloween) for free or inexpensive Durham area activities to get you out and about this weekend.
Friday, October 28
OctoberFest - FREE - RTP Community Church, 1727 E. Cook Rd. - 6:00-10:00 p.m.
A description from the event website: "Trunk or Treat. Mega jumping towers. Hay rides. Free pumpkin patch. Pumpkin carving. Make-your-own candy apples. Bon fire & smores. Carnival games. Fashion show. Face Painting. Bratwursts with sauerkraut. Root beer. Barbecue pork ribs. German potato salad. Grilled corn on the cob. Funnel cake. Cotton candy. Snow cones. Pretzels. Bake sale."
I have no idea if it would be awkward to show up at a church event if you aren't a member of the congregation, but this sounds like a fun family night out, and I'm sure they would welcome visitors, or they wouldn't be advertising on the city events calendar.
Saturday, October 29
Dracula Film Screening - FREE - The Roxy, 802 W. Main St., Durham - 9:00 p.m.
Durham Zombie Lurch - Begins 5:00 p.m. in parking lot across from Piedmont, Foster St., Durham
- After watching the first season of The Walking Dead, I may be a little terrified of zombies, but this unique Durham event still intrigues me. On Halloween weekend, hundreds of local "zombies" converge on downtown. Put on your Zombie best to join them, or head down to Durham Central Park to watch. Don't worry, you should be safer than Rick Grimes and his crew.
Post-lurch, head to Motorco, where there will be free music, pumpkin carving, and food trucks (not free).
NC Food at Wine Festival at Southern Season - Chapel Hill - 11:00-4:00 p.m.
Join vendors, chefs, and authors for free tastings, demonstrations, and book signings.
Southern Village Halloween Costume Party - FREE - Village Green Southern Village (Market St.), Chapel Hill - 12:30-3:30 p.m.
Dress up the kids and head to Southern Village in Chapel Hill for music, dancing, games, a bounce house, and trick or treating sponsored by businesses around the village square.
Sunday, October 30th
Food Truck Rodeo - Durham Central Park, 4:00-8:00 p.m.
Until reading the website description, I actually would have warned against this event. Durham food truck rodeos have become so popular, that at the most recent one, people stood in line for hours to get food, and many trucks ran out of a food well before the event ended.
It seems organizers have re-organized, though. Foster Street will be closed to traffic, so the trucks will be able to spread out, which should help crowding and line confusion. All food trucks have also agreed to be bring enough food to actually last the duration of the event. Twenty seven area trucks will be present, so this could be a great opportunity to find a new favorite!